The night we met you drunkenly dumped a fistful of acorns into my lap.
“I wish these were emeralds.”
Twenty years, three kids, two visits to rehab and one extra marital affair later we sit in a restaurant. You push a small box across the table towards me.
“I wish these were acorns,” you say softly.
Emeralds encircle a band of gold. I slip the ring on my finger. Struggling to find the right words, the only emotion I feel is tired. Tired of apologies. Tired of fighting. Tired of disappointment.
Is that life? Learning to live with the disappointment? I know I should say thank you, or I love you, but I don’t feel any of those things. I glance at you and see so many things in your eyes. Fear, resentment, hope.
Hope? For what? For what we were? For what we wanted to be? For the chance that maybe it will get better? Maybe true love is not great passion or constant laughter and good times. Perhaps true love is accepting that no matter how imperfect your mate is, they need to love you, and are grateful for the love they receive from you.
I slip my foot out of my shoe and let my toes gently caress your ankle. A smile forms on your lips.
“I’ll ask for the check.”
You reach for my hand, the emeralds glinting in the candlelight.
©2009 VL Sheridan